The Astros have shut down righty Scott Feldman for the rest of the season, per a club announcement. Rather than trying to work back for the playoffs, the 32-year-old will “immediately begin a rehabilitation protocol that will extend through the offseason” in hopes that he’ll be ready to go for 2016.
Feldman left his last start, on September 1st, with shoulder discomfort. Initial reports were not terribly alarming, but the veteran struggled in a throwing session. It would seem that the team and the player were unable to identify a workable way for him to safely return this fall.
While this obviously represents disappointing news for all involved, Feldman’s contributions to the surprising ’Stros won’t be forgotten. Since signing the three-year, $30MM deal that brought him to Houston before the 2014 season, Feldman has racked up 288 2/3 innings of 3.80 ERA pitching. While hardly dominant, that was just the kind of steady rotation work that the Astros sought when they signed him.
Things have changed quite a bit over Feldman’s tenure, of course. Most recently, the so-far-successful call-ups of youngsters Lance McCullers and Vincent Velasquez, in addition to trades for Scott Kazmir and Mike Fiers, have both deepened and raised the ceiling of the rotation.
Houston will, it appears, focus on getting Feldman healthy for the final year of his contract. He figures to play an important stabilizing role on the 2016 club, especially if the team decides to rely heavily on its younger pitchers rather than pursuing veterans on the open market.